HP recalls notebook batteries

Recall affecting almost 16,000 notebook batteries is imposed after reports of the devices overheating, burning.

Hewlett-Packard is recalling almost 16,000 notebook batteries worldwide after reports of the devices overheating and burning, according to a report released Thursday by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

This battery recall comes six months after HP and the safety commission announced one involving 135,000 battery units worldwide. HP, however, is hardly alone in facing battery recalls--computer makers such as Dell and Apple Computer have announced similar problems.

In HP's most recent case, batteries beginning with the bar code L3 are affected and may be found in HP and Compaq notebooks. HP Pavilion family notebooks with model numbers dv1xxx, ze2xxx, as well as HP Compaq family notebooks with model number nx48xx, may be affected. Compaq Presario models V2xxx and M2xxx may also be affected, according to the U.S. Consumer Product report.

HP is voluntarily recalling the lithium ion rechargeable batteries, which were sold at national and regional computer and electronics stores, as well as online, last year.

"An internal failure can cause the battery to overheat and melt, or char the plastic case, posing a burn and fire hazard," according to the safety commission. "HP has received 20 reports of batteries overheating...One minor injury has been reported (and) 11 cases of minor property damage."

Back in 2001, Compaq recalled 1.4 million power adapters for its notebook computers. That case involved notebooks manufactured between 1988 and 2001 and resulted in five reports of the computers catching on fire.

Consumers who find their battery units are affected will receive a free replacement battery. HP has also launched an HP Battery Replacement Program Web Site.

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